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Sep 3, 2020

Hurricane Nana & Punta Gorda

It’s been nineteen years since a hurricane has devastated Punta Gorda, Toledo; that was back in October 2001 when Hurricane Iris, a category four hurricane made landfall near Monkey River.  Back then, homes were destroyed, streets flooded and trees uprooted so even though Nana developed into a category one hurricane, residents were bracing for its effects. But as it turned out, the folks were spared the full wrath of a hurricane.  News Five’s Duane Moody reports.

 

Duane Moody, Reporting

An “All Clear” was issued this morning as Tropical Storm Nana moved through Guatemala. Toledo was the last district to get the all clear. No heavy breeze, slight drizzle and thunder, nothing unusual – that’s how residents of Punta Gorda and neighbouring villages describe the experience of Wednesday night into this morning. From mid-afternoon on Wednesday, the skies were overcast with dark clouds forming and thunderstorms were felt here and there. The waters became rough along the coastal town, but that was it.

 

Wil Maheia

Wil Maheia, Punta Gorda Resident

“Everybody seemed to have stayed connected and know what the next move was. Earlier in the day when the seas before it got rough late into the night, but I think one of the highlight is that PG people are used to seeing water sprouts on the horizon; that was a treat to see about three or four of them. Then in the evening, going into the night, people are aware of curfew, so everybody had to do what they had to do before eight o’clock at night. Stores were bustling, people were boarding up and everybody was getting ready. People kinda waited up until nine o’clock in the night time then there was like a slight drizzle that started—no heavy rain, no heavy breeze until about three o’clock in the morning. There was some breeze, but nothing out of the extraordinary. PG people are used to these thunder and lightning squalls. What happened last night wouldn’t have been like an unusual event.”

 

A trip around the town shows that at least one tree was uprooted and landed atop a house, but there was little damage to the structure. Elsewhere there were a number of crops that had flattened. Interestingly, there was no flooding as there was a little less than three inches of rainfall.

 

Wil Maheia

“We didn’t see any damages. There was one tree that fell on a house; the house didn’t get any damages. People were anticipating and dawn came and that was it. In the aftermath, not much damage. There were a few corn fields that the corn was destroyed, fell down because of the winds; some of those corns that were planted on the hillside. There was no flooding as far as we could have seen. I don’t know if elsewhere but where we drove, there was no flooding i9n Colombia, there was no flooding in Big Falls, there was no flooding in Silver Creek. Jacintoville is usually prone to flooding, but there is no flooding there either.”

 

Today, it is business as usual in this southernmost municipality.

 

Wil Maheia

“Business is back to normal. Lots of the plywood is down. I think a lot of people are confused. I think it would be good for NEMO to explain why it is that only Toledo has not gotten the “All Clear.” A lot of people mentioned that. They wanted to know why the rest of the country had an “All Clear” except Toledo when the sun is actually shining in Toledo.”

 

Duane Moody for News Five.


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